2013 has been a very challenging year for most people that I know, or have had a chance to talk with. We have lost family and friends. There has been ongoing duress due to the continued problems in the economy. Pick any one month of 'news' in 2013 and it would have made for a full year of happenings in any prior year. It seems like we've all been drenched by a fire hose at least once, if not many times!
For me 2013 had been a year where I made the choice to not stress out over things I could not change; things I could not do; circumstances which where too much for me to handle. I let go of the reins more than a few times when the horses started to make a run for it. Figured, "it will be what it will be" and just tried to not get tossed out of the wagon until things settled down.
By and large I didn't get tossed and things did settle down. Some times the ride was fun, sometimes it was more like "crap on a crap cracker" as I've heard one call it. As Solomon wrote millenia ago, "There is a time and a season for everything under the sun...a time to be born, and a time to die". There are things that are not elective courses.
My Niece asked me, "What has been good?". She said she's been asking herself that question and it has helped her to broaden her focus from just seeing the tough stuff to also balance that with the sweet stuff. She's learned to open herself to the moments of goodness which fill each day: a moment of warm sun on her face, petting a nice dog, enjoying the company of a true friend.
In Maine, there is a large population of French-Canadians (mainly from Quebec) who migrated south during the industrial revolution in America. Plenty of Cyr's and Ladeau's and LaFlamme's in these parts. One thing about the French, they know how to confront the difficulties and joys of life: everything becomes a party! Lot's of dancing, singing, eating, socializing. Is there a birth, death, accident, victory? There is a party to go along with that.
I once asked a local band leader here, who did community gigs, what were his most challenging gigs. Tony's quick response: Those old french folks down in Biddeford. They will not quit. The french social club parties, down there, are all-nighters. We play till 1 AM and are exhausted ... but they force us to play on till 3 or 4 in the morning ... And those are the 80 and 90 year olds!!
Somehow I think they know what they are doing, those old folks. They know life is a dance. They know how to be passionate about living, now. They are not waiting for an invitation. They are making it happen, now. That must be why I like that Cajun music, and the Podorythmie of Quebec. My toes are tapping right now.
Anyway, what I mean to say is this, about 2014 ... let's not be shy. Whatever comes is only part of the equation. The larger factor and effect is what we do with it, how we approach what is in front of us. Frankly, I'm inclined to put on some dance music. There's no time like NOW, to live and to love. Care to join me?
Allen Pollock, ( Owner of Gentle Breeze Farm, LLC located in Windham, Maine )
Gentle ponderings & ruminations on life and living